The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 69, July 1965 - April, 1966 Page: 75
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Notes and Documents
panied by Co. "G" 24th Infantry under Capt. Lewis Johnson,"9
which served as an escort and furnished working parties. The line
was being erected with cedar poles, which were located some sixty
miles from the working party and were hauled by a Government
train of ten teams which could haul but enough poles to keep the
party working three days a week. Finding that a prolonged delay
would ensue from hauling cedar, arrangements were made for ob-
taining native timber, and, accordingly, contracts were made for
post oak poles from Decatur0 to Jacksboro.41
On April 6th an office was opened at Pilot Point,42 41 miles from
Denison, with Private John McGuire43 as operator, and a regular
camp office established with Private J. H. Crowley44 in charge.
Although his orders did not so require[,] Capt. Johnson kindly took
charge of the working party leaving me free for work elsewhere.
Capt. Johnson continued the work with great zeal and energy,
building 44 miles in 33 days and on May 8th the line was com-
pleted to Fort Richardson,"4 and an office established with Private
Eugene Peters" in charge as operator. This line is 114 miles long
3"Born in Germany, Lewis Johnson served with the loth Indiana Infantry and
the United States Colored Infantry during the Civil War. On March 13, 1865, he
was breveted brigadier general of volunteers, and was commissioned a first lieu-
tenant in the regular army a year later. He transferred to the 24th Infantry in
1869, and retired a major five years before his death on September 23, 1900oo. Heit-
man, Historical Register, I, 576.
"Decatur, in central Wise County, was laid out in 1857 and named for Com-
modore Stephen Decatur. It was once a stop on the Butterfield route. Greely was
able to purchase and have delivered the post oak poles at less than $1.25 each.
Webb and Carroll (eds.), Handbook, I, 479; Greely to Chief Signal Officer, May 4,
"Jacksboro was settled in 1855, by Calvin Gage and Moses Danron and, with the
building of Fort Richardson in 1867, the town prospered. Webb and Carroll (eds.),
Handbook, I, 9oo.
42Pilot Point, located on the site of a post oak grove in Denton County in 1854,
was used by Indians as a lookout and later by travellers as a landmark. In 1875,
the Texas and Pacific Railroad made a connection with the town. The office was
closed on June 1, 1875, when the operator was transferred to Virginia; it was
reopened on June 15. Ibid., II, 379; Greely to Chief Signal Officer, July 17, 1875.
"John McGuire enlisted on October 27, 1871, and was discharged as a private
in the Signal Service on May 27, 1876. E. L. Huber, General Services Administration,
to L. T. E., April 18, 1962, incorporating a report on Signal Service personnel.
"James H. Crowley enlisted on July 13, 1874, and was discharged from the Signal
Service on December 12, 1876. He was transferred to Griffin when an office was
opened there on July 12, 1875. Ibid.; Greely to Chief Signal Officer, August 13, 1875.
45Fort Richardson was established at Jacksboro in 1866, to protect the frontier
from Indians. A permanent fort was set up in 1867, one-half mile south of the
town, and named after Israel B. Richardson, who was fatally wounded at Antietam.
It was abandoned on May 23, 1878. Joseph Carroll McConnell, The West Texas
Frontier (2 vols.; Jacksboro, 1933), I, 81-82.
"Eugene Peters joined the army on March 27, 1874, and was discharged as a
private in the Signal Service on July 16, 1878. Huber to L. T. E., April 18, 1962.
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Texas State Historical Association. The Southwestern Historical Quarterly, Volume 69, July 1965 - April, 1966, periodical, 1966; Austin, Texas. (https://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth117144/m1/93/?rotate=270: accessed June 27, 2019), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, https://texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Texas State Historical Association.